“No.” And he wiggled his eyebrows at her, that infuriating man.
“Reese Durham,” she said in a warning tone. “I need to check my email and make sure there’s nothing that requires Logan’s immediate attention.”
“You told me yourself that Logan hired two additional assistants. Let one of them handle it.” He put a finger to his goatee, as if coming up with a brilliant idea. “Or, I know. You could quit and spend more time with your soon-to-be husband.”
She rolled her eyes at him and got up from her chair. “Don’t make me search you.”
“What a terrible prospect,” he said in a dry voice, and put his hands behind his head. “Do with me as you will, firecracker.”
“You are a frustrating man,” she told him, and began to pat him down, searching for her phone.
“And you’re a frustrating woman,” he said, dragging her down on top of him and ignoring her squeal of protest. “I told you that you work too hard.”
She flailed against him for a moment, but when his hands went to her breasts, she made a soft sound of pleasure and slid down next to him on the couch. “I’m not working too hard.”
“You are. Look at how exhausted you’ve been lately.” His fingers stroked her cheek absently. “Last night when I came home, you were asleep already.”
She yawned at the thought. “Your poker game ran late.”
“Not that late,” he told her. “I told Logan he’s working you too hard and I’m going to fuck him up if he runs you into the ground.”
Audrey groaned, burying her face in his shoulder. “You did not. Reese, he’s my boss!”
“I can be your boss.”
“No, you’re going to be my husband, remember?”
“All the more reason for you to quit.”
“You’re trying to get me all pissed off so we can have angry sex, aren’t you?”
His hand caressed her breast, idly teasing the ultra-sensitive nipple through the fabric of her top. “If I was trying to get you angry, firecracker, I’d show you that white bikini I got for you to be married in.”
“Reese,” she said in a warning tone. “I’m not wearing a bikini on a public beach.”
“It’s a good thing it’s a private beach, eh?”
She should have protested. Pitched a fit. She knew he’d bought it purely to get a rise out of her. It was probably ridiculous—something with a string for a strap and a thong in the back. He seemed to think she was some sort of nubile ubervixen . . . not that she minded, really. But laying against him made her sleepy, and his hands felt so good on her breasts that she didn’t even complain.
“See?” he murmured, kissing her hair. “You’re exhausted. That does it. I’m letting Logan have it when we get back to New York.”
“No, you’re not,” she said softly. The reason for her exhaustion had nothing to do with her job.
She was pregnant.
It was, in retrospect, a bit of a nightmare. After that initial torrid interlude in the closet, she’d gotten on the Pill. Unfortunately, she hadn’t gotten on the Pill quick enough, and by the time her next period had rolled around, it didn’t happen. She blamed it on stress and the Pill itself because her life had been turned upside down. Stress from moving in with Reese, Daphne’s enrollment into rehab, juggling her job—all of it would have driven a normal person insane. But when she missed her period for the second month in a row, she went back to the doctor. Sure enough, she was pregnant.
And she didn’t know what to do. She hadn’t told Reese yet. Part of her was utterly terrified that he’d look at it as her trying to entrap him into a long-lasting relationship. She wondered if he’d blame her because she was supposed to be on the Pill. And she was, but she’d still somehow managed to get knocked up.
She had to tell him. Before they got married, so he could still get out of things. But she’d put it off. She’d meant to tell him before they’d left for Hawaii, but it had never been just the right time. Reese had been busy with plans for the new Durham Industries cruise line, along with the investment into an exclusive line of high-end luxury cars he’d partnered with Jonathan Lyons on. Once his billionaire buddies had heard about his financial issues, they’d leapt in with both feet to assist him, and Reese was doing better than ever.
Busier than ever, too.
She hugged him a little closer, resting her cheek against him.
“Why so sad, baby?” Reese ran his thumb over her lower lip, caressing her. He constantly touched her when they were together, something she found she enjoyed quite a bit. It was as if he couldn’t help himself and had to be touching and caressing her at all times. “Is it Daphne? Are you regretting our bet?”
She gave his abdomen a light smack. “You know I never back down from a bet.”
Dares and bets had become their thing. It was a fun way to get the other riled up, which led to passionate sex and then even more sex. Audrey dared Reese to invest in something he didn’t want to. Reese dared Audrey to wear something low cut. The stakes changed frequently, from kisses to public makeouts to anything and everything they could think of.
One stake frequently ended up on the table, though: anal sex.
Audrey was pretty sure Reese brought it up constantly as a trump card. But he hadn’t won a bet in which anal had been brought into play. They hadn’t explored that part of their relationship yet, but she had a bottle of lube in her carryon that she hadn’t told him about. They’d joked that they’d save it for the honeymoon and it was here.
Today’s bet had included anal, too. Reese had bet her that she couldn’t go without calling Daphne while on their honeymoon. She bet that she could. If she lost, they would have anal sex. If she won, he owed her a full body massage every day for a month.
She was dangerously close to losing the bet already, and the plane was still somewhere over the Pacific. Because right now? She desperately needed to talk to her twin. Despite being in extended on-location rehab, Daphne had been allowed a private cell phone that only had one number programmed into it—hers. It was her only condition on going into rehab, and one that all parties had given into gracefully. The twins talked on the phone daily, sharing secrets and discussing how Daphne was doing, how Audrey’s relationship was going, and everything in between.
Audrey had her sister back, and it was the best thing in the world.
She stroked a hand down Reese’s flat stomach. Well, tied for best thing in the world.
“You hungry?” Reese asked her, still running his hands over her body.
“Mmm, I could eat.”
“You lay here and I’ll let the attendant know we want lunch.” He slid off the couch and headed to the front of the private jet, where the attendant and pilot were located.
She waited for him to disappear, and then as soon as he did, she jumped up and ran to the bedroom and shut the door behind her. Since he still had her phone, she’d have to use the one in the bedroom. She had time for a quick call, too; Reese was good friends with the pilot and often stopped up to the cockpit to chat with him for a few minutes.
Audrey quickly dialed Daphne’s number.
Her twin picked up on the second ring. “I was wondering when you’d call. How’s it going?”
“Reese bet me that I wouldn’t call while we were on our honeymoon,” Audrey said with a sigh. “So I have to make this short.”
“That’s fine. I have group in about ten minutes anyhow.” Daphne’s voice was cheerful and strong. Gone was the thready uncertainty, the shaking, and the sullenness. The rehab seemed to be working, but Audrey wasn’t going to get her hopes up too much. She’d give it time. If Daphne could stay clean for a year, then maybe this had a chance. Three months made her optimistic, though. More than that, Daphne herself seemed to be changed. For the first time she truly, genuinely seemed to want to get better. She’d cut ties with her label, citing that she needed a career vacation. She still had two albums under contract with them, but since she’d been clear that she wasn’t interested in the money or fame any longer, they’d negotiated down to a remix album and a greatest hits album—for a much smaller price tag. Daphne hadn’t minded it at all.
She said she was done with music. Audrey didn’t know if that was the case, but she liked this new aspect of her twin.
“So did you tell him?” Daphne asked, excitement in her voice.
“Not yet,” Audrey said, a trembling note in hers. “I’m scared.”
“Don’t be a baby. Just suck it up and tell him. I . . . are you crying?”
“No,” Audrey said, and then ruined it with a watery sniff. Damn it. The pregnancy hormones were making her insane. She’d cried three times in the last week over stupid stuff.
“Well, you need to stop,” Daphne said sensibly. “Especially if you want to keep this a secret. If he sees you crying, he’s really going to think something’s up.”
“I just don’t know what to do, Daph,” Audrey said, wiping away her tears. “What if he doesn’t want it?”
“Then the two of us raise that baby with Twinkie power,” Daphne said stubbornly. “It can have two moms. Or just one. We can pitch-hit and switch out. I’ll put on some boring clothes and re-dye my hair and the kid will never suspect a thing.”
Audrey gave a weepy giggle. “Great. Don’t forget that you need to put on some weight, too.”
“This is true. You have bras bigger than the dress I wore to last year’s Grammys.”
The comment made her think of the white bikini Reese had bought her, and she burst into new tears. A white bikini for their wedding. What if he didn’t want to get married when he found out she was pregnant?
“Oh, jeez,” Daphne said soothingly. “It’s going to be okay, Twinkie. Calm down.”
“Audrey?” Reese stood in the doorway of the bedroom, frowning at her.
“I gotta go. I’ll call you later,” she whispered to Daph, and hung up.
“Why are you crying?” Reese shut the door behind him and strode across the bedroom to her, a black look on his face.
His fingers swept over her cheeks, brushing away her tears. She looked up at him and the edges of his mouth whitened with anger. “It’s not nothing. Is it your sister?”
“I’m going to fucking kill her if she’s pulling another one of her stunts. It’s bad enough that she’s stressing you out. What did she do this time?”
“Reese, she didn’t do anything—” Her hands brushed his aside.
“I’m going to turn this fucking plane around and then I’m going to go choke her by her scrawny neck for making you cry again. Goddamn, I—”
“Reese! Shut up!” Audrey exploded. “I’m pregnant, okay? I’m pregnant and I’m freaking out.”
As soon as the words left her mouth, she clapped a hand over her lips. Oh, hell. That wasn’t how she’d wanted to tell him. How did he always manage to rile her so much?
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